Guardianship & Incapacitated Teens Becoming 18

It is natural for you, as a parent of a teenager, who has a developmental disability; mental illness, or traumatic brain injury, to be extremely concerned about your teenager's heath, safety and welfare as they are approach their eighteen birthday.  As a loving and concerned parent, you have gone through a lifetime of trials and tribulations as you have watched your child develop and grow from infancy into their teens to the eve of adulthood.   

On your child's eighteenth birthday, your child will be legally considered an adult and is presumed competent with all the rights and responsibilities of an adult.  As a parent, what does this mean for them and for you?   You worry who will make for your adult child routine, or in the event of an emergency, medical decisions for them?  Who will make decisions to protect the safety of your adult child within the community?  Who will have the authority to help make decisions about where they live and their activities of daily life?      

You may have been considering a guardianship when your teen becomes an adult and have many questions?  If you are considering filing for guardianship, planning may start as early as fourteen years old but should begin no later than when they are seventeen years old.  While guardianship for an adult child is possible, the court must deem that the child truly meets the standards of being incapacitated, which is typically a stricter standard than what many parents would agree with. There are alternative to guardianships which should be explored before filing for guardianship.  Filing for guardianship is an extremely document intensive process and although many parents believe that they can do it themselves, once they start the process, they find it extremely confusing, complicated and stressful!

Guardianship attorney Karen D. Lane has been practicing guardianship and conservatorship law for over fourteen years, representing clients who retain her legal expertise to file for  guardianship and conservatorship and respresenting clients contesting being under guardianship or conservatorship.  As part of her practice, she also serves as a professional guardian and conservator and brings her expertise, long experience and unique prospective to this area of the law.  

Attorney Karen D. Lane’s office is located in the town of Sherborn, which is centrally located 3.3 miles directly  south of the Mass Pike, on the Natick/Framingham town lines. She represents clients throughout metro-suburban Boston in Middlesex, Norfolk, Suffolk, Worcester, and Essex counties. Attorney Lane meets with clients both in her office and in their homes, by appointment only. Please call attorney Karen D. Lane at 508-655-5513 or contact her online today to schedule your free initial consultation and learn more about guardianship to protect the health, safety and welfare of your soon-to-be adult child, who is developmentally or mentally disabled.